Collecting localities



Biographical data


Topping, David Leroy


(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 1: Cyclopaedia of collectors)


Born: 1861, North Harpersfield, N.Y., U.S.A.. Died: 1939, Honolulu, Hawaii.



For many years a government official in the Philippines, employee of the Auditor’s Office and the Bureau of the Treasury at Manila. He was interested in botanical field work and collected in the U.S.A., Siberia (serving with the American Red Cross following the World War), Hawaiian Islands, and the below-mentioned localities in Malaysia. He lived at Honolulu since his retirement in 1922.

Elmer, Copeland,2 and Merrill named several plants in his honour.


Collecting localities:

Philippines, between c. 1903-22. Luzon: in the vicinity of Baguio, Benguet Prov. (Jan.-Febr. 1903), Mt Sto Tomas; Lamao Forest Reserve (May 1904); environs of Manila.-Br. N. Borneo: Mt Kinabalu (Oct.-Nov. 1915), with Mrs M.S. Clemens (see there).



Mostly ferns. 1st set in Herb. Manila [PNH]: 550 Philip. ferns (pres. 1908-09), Philip. plants (pres. 1914-15), 560 Borneo ferns (pres. 1916). Dupl. in: U.S. Nat. Herb. Wash. [US]: 1398 Philip. plants, 229 from Br. N. Borneo; Herb. Copeland: ferns from Kinabalu [UC]; Herb. Berkeley (Cal.) [UC]: Borneo plants; from Kinabalu in various other herbaria; Herb. N. Y. Bot. Gard. [NY]: 100 Philip. ferns and besides probably the set presented by O. Degener. The latter procured a fine collection of pteridophytes (by purchase and bequest); the plants were distributed widely, the best set went to N. Y. Bot. Gard. [NY], but also one to Herb. Geneva [G] (218 dupl. Philip. and Borneo ferns).

The collection from Lamao Forest Reserve amounts to some hundred of numbers.1 On Mt Kinabalu he mainly collected ferns. He numbered partly in the Bureau of Science (B.S.) series, but partly with private numbers too.



(1) C. Merrill in Philip. Journ. Sci. C. Bot. 1, 1906, Suppl. p. 3.

(2) E.B. Copeland: ‘New species and a new genus of Borneo ferns chiefly from the Kinabalu collections of Mrs Clemens and Mr Topping’ (l.c. 12, 1917, p. 45-65).

cf. also C. Christensen & R.E. Holltum in ‘The ferns of Mount Kinabalu’ (Gard. Bull. Str. Settlem. 7, 1934, p. 191-324, pl. 51-62); and E.D. Merrill in Amer. Journ. Bot. 5, 1918, p. 514-515.


biographical data:

Backer, Verkl. Woordenb., 1936; Bern. P. Bish. Mus. Spec. publ. 34, 1939, p. 32; Science 90, 1939, p. 203; Chron. Bot. 6, 1940, p. 68.